Crittenton Women’s Union and ResearchILD Receive Grants

February 9, 2012 — Crittenton Women’s Union, a Boston nonprofit dedicated to helping low-income women attain economic self-sufficiency, and ResearchILD, a Lexington nonprofit focused on transforming the lives of students with learning and attention difficulties, recently were awarded grants to support core programs.

Crittenton Women’s Union (CWU) has received a two-year grant of $200,000 from the Mabel Louise Riley Foundation to support its economic mobility program, Career Family Opportunity.

“Career Family Opportunity is a pilot program designed to move single-parent low-income families to full economic self-sufficiency within five years,” said Elisabeth D. Babcock, CWU president/CEO. “It has shown increasingly impressive results since its launch in 2009. This generous award will enable even more families to benefit from our unique program model.”

The grant, disbursed in two installments of $100,000 over two years, will support the program’s South Boston site, which serves 25 families. The Career Family Opportunity (CFO) program also serves 20 families in Cambridge, in partnership with the Cambridge Housing Authority.

CFO helps participants achieve, within five years, the program two major goals – a job that pays enough to support a family and $10,000 in savings. To help, CWU provides mentors who work with program participants to develop personalized action plans, connect to resources, offer referrals to professional help, provide financial incentives, and facilitate group support.

ResearchILD Receives $30K from Shire Pharmaceuticals

ResearchILD, a Lexington-based nonprofit educational and research organization focused on transforming the lives of students with learning and attention difficulties, was recently awarded two grants totaling $30,000.from Shire Pharmaceuticals.

The grants, valued at $15,000 each, will support two of ResearchILD's programs. One grant will support the SMARTS Leadership and Mentoring Program, now in its third year. The second will support ResearchILD’s 27th annual Learning Differences Conference, an international conference for professionals in education, child development, speech and language pathology, and school psychology.

“We are so excited that Shire has recognized the importance of ResearchILD’s mission to transform the lives of students with learning and attention difficulties by helping them to learn how to learn,” said Dr. Lynn Meltzer, president of ResearchILD. “Those diagnosed with ADHD need support from educators and corporations such as Shire in order to help reduce the levels of school truancy and drop-out rates, and potentially improve testing scores of at-risk learners.”

The SMARTS Leadership and Mentoring Program has been successfully implemented in inner-city schools, most recently at Prospect Hill Academy in Cambridge. Through SMARTS (Success, Motivation, Awareness, Resilience, Talents and Strategies), high school seniors with learning challenges serve as mentors and are paired with younger students with learning challenges so together they can develop strategies that lead to enhanced academic performance.

This year’s conference will address the topic of “Executive Function, Motivation and Effort: The Cornerstones of Resilience and Success” and will take place at The Harvard Graduate School of Education on March 16-17.